It’s that time of year again where we stop complaining about how cold it is when we run….and start complaining how hot it is! We can never really get much of a balance where the weather and temperature is just right or at least we don’t tend to remember it much when we do. Now that it’s getting quite warm outside, how can we get the best out of our runs without overheating? Here are my top 5 tips for running in the heat:
- Go out early in the morning. It’s now getting brighter earlier in the morning and so its worth taking advantage and get out early before it gets warm. It will also set you up for the day and you can go to work rather smug for having already exercised.
- Stay hydrated. This means drinking plenty water in the 12-24 hours before you run rather than just before you go out or during the run. Going out in the heat already dehydrated isn’t a good idea and will affect your performance and potentially your health afterwards.
- Have an electrolyte drink. Depending on the distance you plan to run, it’s good to have an electrolyte drink either before you go out or take with you and drink during the run. You will likely sweat throughout the day, before or after your run and so the electrolyte drink will help replace the minerals you lose through sweating. Science In Sport and High 5 are both very good brands who produce great effervescent tablets that will give you all the electrolytes you need.
- Wear sunscreen! Many people often forget this (I’ve been there myself) and end up being burned to a crisp. This is not ideal health wise and so make sure you cover yourself before going out. Look for a sunscreen that is designed to cope with sport so that it doesn’t wash away with sweat. There are plenty of products out there and I recommend P20 which will cover you for 10 hours and is very water-resistant so perfect if you’re going swimming.
- Go easy on the distance and intensity. There’s nothing worse than blazing sunshine when we’re planning on running 10 miles! I would recommend going for shorter distances and a slower pace as this will place less stress on the body and your performance and recovery afterwards will be better. A longer run and a higher intensity are both best served (and more effective) either early morning/late evening or leave them until a day when it’s much cooler.
I hope these tips help when planning your runs in the heat.
What do you do to help you run better in the heat? Any tips that you can share that I haven’t listed?